Nowadays, nutraceuticals have received considerable interest due to potential nutritional, safety and therapeutic effects. Pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals both can cure and prevent diseases. However, only pharmaceuticals have governmental sanction, says Dr Ajit Gupta, Founder and Director, Park Group of Hospitals in conversation with Elets News Network (ENN).
How Indian healthcare industry needs to be looked at as a whole rather than only sickness or illness to offer total health solutions to patients?
Getting an adequate dosage directly from the natural sources is the only possible way. Besides, reliance on nutraceuticals is vital to view health as a whole rather than something just limited to illness to provide patients wholesome health solutions. With a surge in several lifestyle diseases, there is however a growing interest and enthusiasm to explore benefits of health foods, dietary supplements and nutraceuticals.
How are alternate medicines and nutraceuticals becoming a part of people’s lives and what’s their significance?
Alternate medicines and nutraceuticals are part of individuals’ live around the world. In most parts of the Western world, the nutraceutical industry is massive, as compared to that of India where we seem to be taking baby steps in health industry.
Nutraceuticals may be used to improve health, delay the aging process, prevent chronic diseases, increase life expectancy, or support the structure or function of the body. Nowadays, nutraceuticals have received considerable interest due to potential nutritional, safety and therapeutic effects.
Pharmaceuticals are mostly considered as medications, which are used mainly to treat diseases. However, nutraceuticals are the substances mostly considered to prevent diseases. This sort of distinction between pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals is highly erroneous and superficial. Pharmaceuticals and nutraceuticals both can cure and prevent diseases. However, only pharmaceuticals have governmental sanction.
How do you view growth rate of nutraceutical business as compared to pharma?
The nutraceutical business at this moment is quite substantial and as compared to pharma it is almost one-fourth in size. It has been growing at more than double rate in last 10-12 years. Nutraceuticals are not new. But there is a new level of activity and development in the category that could have a significant impact on pharma. Some might think that nutraceuticals are trivial and on some level driven by urban myth.
How is nutraceutical business going to impact the future of healthcare industry?
The potential for nutraceuticals in the country is immense and this is where food and health ingredient expos play a critical role as it brings suppliers, consultants, foreign and Indian buyers, distributors, retailers, dieticians and other professionals under one umbrella. Nutraceutical business is going to impact the future of healthcare industry in a positive manner. But people need to grow their faith on them.